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How Property Prices in Boulder Have Grown

In recent years, Boulder’s real estate market has experienced immense growth. For those who live here, it’s not a surprise. After all, the city offers everything you could want and has many growing industries that attract settlers. Plus, it delivers the stunning scenery and environment unique to the great Rocky Mountain region.

But how did its real estate market get to the high costs it has today? That’s the question this article will help answer, first by looking at important stats about the market today and then at the factors that have influenced it.

Boulder’s Real Estate Market Today

Currently, the average cost of a single-family home on the market in Boulder is roughly $1.2 million, and a condo is approximately $473,000. At the beginning of 2020, however, the average was $897,000 for a house and $398,000 for a condo. Most homes sit on the market for 23 days before a pending sale, two days below the US average.

The market has also seen record-breaking sales prices in its high-end, luxury real estate market, with a $13 million sale for a home breaking a record in 2023. It’s anticipated that this record will be broken again this year and that sales within this price range will be more commonplace.

While today’s growth in property value may seem like it’s falling or lackluster compared to the 2022 peak, where houses were selling for roughly $60,000 more, it’s important to bear in mind that the region’s growth just following the pandemic was unprecedented. This means today’s slowed growth is still considerable compared to the numbers before 2020.

Factors Driving These High Property Costs

Before and after the pandemic, several prominent influences on the Boulder market have slowly driven up property costs and continue to do so, and the ones below stand out the most.

Low Housing Availability

Until early 2024, adding new residential buildings in Boulder was limited to never exceeding 1% of the existing residential market. This was started in 2004 to help maintain the high quality of life Boulder offers its residents. As a result, the availability of homes in Boulder is generally low, with few houses being listed, which has shaped a competitive market that inevitably has helped push prices higher.

Changing Buyer Preferences

The sudden emergence of Boulder’s luxury market is closely linked to the limited availability of homes and shifting buyer preferences. The biggest shift is that buyers now prefer to get a home that’s newly renovated and move-in ready (a shift from the prior excitement around purchasing a fixer-upper), and buyers are willing to spend more to get this.

There’s also the increasing preference for homes situated in regions with a little bit of everything. And a little bit of everything is just what Boulder has to offer. It supports a wealth of job opportunities (more on this shortly), provides easy access to recreational activities like skiing, and has a small-town feel with city amenities.

High Quality of Living

Boulder has many qualities that make it an appealing place to live, and one of the key ones is that it boasts an incredibly high quality of life, ranking number 10 on the US News & World Report analysis of over 150 United States cities.

It’s a beautiful city with various amenities and entertainment options for enhancing health and wellness and building community. It is also an easily commutable city for driving or taking public transit, with an average commute of just 25 minutes. Boulder also boasts many bike paths that make navigating the region by bike easy.

Contributing to this high quality of life is the effortless access to outdoor activities year-round, from skiing and snowboarding in the winter to hiking, biking, rock climbing, and camping in the summer.

Plenty of Job Opportunities

Boulder has established itself as a tech and biotech hub with a pronounced government, sustainable energy, and aerospace research presence. These varied industry presences have led to many job opportunities in the city and attracted many highly skilled and educated professionals to the area.

Among these job opportunities, you’ll find industry leaders and giants like Apple, Google, IBM, and Lockheed Martin, as well as research facilities like the National Center for Atmospheric Research.

The city is also home to one of the University of Colorado’s campuses, creating a talent pool and drawing students from around the country. The university is known for its engineering and science programs, top-tier research facility, and range of master’s and doctoral programs.

Safe and Secure City for Families

Alongside Boulder’s growing presence of young professionals (with the average age of residents being just 35) is a growing number of young families. The low crime rate in Boulder is naturally a major selling feature for those looking for a safe place to raise a family.

Conclusion

When it comes to buying property, be it a family home or a condo, Boulder has a lot of appeal, making its real estate market lucrative for sellers. The value of properties has increased significantly, particularly since 2020, and it shows no signs of slowing down.

Trends and predictions for the future of Boulder’s market show signs of continued growth, particularly in its luxury real estate market and the development of more residential options for buyers. Getting into the market sooner rather than later might just be in your best interest if you’re thinking of settling here, even if it requires winning big at a lottery or online casino that accepts ACH payments to afford the $1.2 million average house price.

John Mali Director of Media Relations

Director of Media Relations at AboutBoulder.com

john@aboutboulder.com

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